Mission

The Siraj NGO strives to integrate the Bedouin society into Israel’s hi-tech sector, the country’s engine of economic growth, to activate workforce development processes that will increase economic prosperity and decrease polarization between the Bedouin community and the general Israeli society.

Siraj was founded in 2017 by Bedouin and Jewish academics, social entrepreneurs, and veterans of the Israeli hi-tech industry. “Siraj” means “a source of light” in Arabic and, true to our name, we aim to catalyze and lead the entrance of Bedouins into Israel’s hi-tech industry by highlighting models of Bedouin engagement with it. Such models currently exist in numbers too small to impact the career paths that young Bedouins pursue, so we work to increase them.

Our daughter company, Siraj Technologies Ltd., strives to be an industry-leading tech company that competes on the global stage while creating highly technical job opportunities for qualified Bedouin college and university graduates.

Model

Our programs work in synergy to grow the funnel of qualified Bedouin hi-tech candidates by offering need-specific programming for four distinct audiences:

  • College and university graduates
  • College and university students
  • High schoolers
  • Bedouin community members (leaders, decision-makers, parents, teachers)

Read more about our programs for each of these groups here.

Staff

Fahima Atawna
Fahima AtawnaExecutive Director
10+ years working to promote health and wellbeing of Bedouin communities in the Negev. Previously Program Manager for Department of Health and Environment at AJEEC-NISPED. Holds MA in Public Health from Ben Gurion University (BGU), BA in Industrial Management from Sapir College, and Diploma in Chemical Engineering from the Technological College of Beer Sheva. Volunteers as ambulance driver in remote Bedouin communities.
Reem Abu Dabis
Reem Abu DabisCommunity Coordinator
Currently completing her BA in Management at BGU. Previously received a certificate in Graphic Design from Appleseeds Academy. Reem resides in Tel Sheva.

Board of Directors

Aharon Fogel
Aharon FogelChairman
Chairs the Board of ZIM Integrated Shipping Services Ltd. and has held multiple executive roles within the Ministry of Finance, including Director General between 1992-1995.
Fadi Elobra
Fadi Elobra Board Member
Entrepreneur, founder of Duroos to empower Arab youth in higher education, and headhunting firm TALENTEAM, which eliminates barriers to private sector employment for Arab professionals.
Hanan Alkrenawi
Hanan Alkrenawi Board Member
Ms. Alkrenawi serves as the Mayor’s Advisor on Women’s Issues in the Rahat Municipality. She is the Director of the Riyan Employment Center’s Imtiaz Program to increase employment in Bedouin society in the Negev; a graduate of the Mandel Center for Leadership in the Negev; and an experienced social worker with deep knowledge of the welfare system and an expertise in group facilitation.

Public Assembly

The above members of the Siraj Board of Directors also serve on the Public Assembly

Dr. Sara Abu Kaf
Dr. Sara Abu Kaf
Faculty member and lecturer in cross-cultural psychology in Conflict Management and Resolution program at BGU. Holds MA in Clinical Psychology, PhD from BGU, and is the first clinical psychologist from the Bedouin society.
Khader Al-Sheikh
Khader Al-SheikhBoard Member
Engineer by training, also holds BA in Business Administration from New England College. Completed Advanced Course for Directors of Public Companies at BGU.
Prof. Jihad El-Sana
Prof. Jihad El-Sana
Department of Computer Science at BGU, Head of Visual Media Lab. Recipient of 1995 Fulbright Scholarship for doctoral studies in the US, earned PhD in Computer Science from the State University of New York, Stony Brook.
Smadar Nehab
Smadar NehabBoard Member
Hi-tech executive and entrepreneur, 25 years’ experience launching and leading R&D organizations in Israel and California. In 2007 founded and led Tsofen, an NGO aiming to integrate Israel’s Arab community and hi-tech sector.
Dr. Giora Yaron
Dr. Giora Yaron
Chairman of Tel Aviv University (Executive Council), serves on the Board of Amdocs and on the Advisory Board of the Ministry of Defense. Active founding investor of various hi-tech and med-tech companies.

Partners & Supporters

We extend our deepest gratitude to our partners and supporters in achieving Siraj’s vision.

Partners

Supporters